How do I access information on old floppy disks?

by on November 11, 2008

Q: I have old floppy disks that I now need the information off of. When I try to access the floppy disks my computer states the disk is not formatted. How can I get to my information?

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One Response to “How do I access information on old floppy disks?”
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    There are two common reasons why your floppy discs may be detected as “not formatted”.

    First, floppies are very fragile. They often lose their formatting as time progresses. In fact, I’ve even seen brand new floppies spontaneously lose their formatting!

    If your floppies have lost their formatting, your best hope is to use one of the many data recovery programs available today.

    Second, you may have created your floppies in a format that is incompatible with your current computer. For example, Windows is often unable to work with floppies that were created on a Macintosh.

    If your floppies were created on an Apple computer, use a Mac OS X computer to retrieve your data from the floppies. Then convert any old files to newer formats. For instance, you will want to convert ClarisWorks documents to Microsoft Office formats. Then use Mac OS X to burn all of this data to CD. The resulting CD should be compatible with Windows.

    Did either of these ideas help?